Bellroy Classic Backpack review: carry your laptop in style

Bellroy Classic Backpack
(Image: © Karen S. Freeman / iMore)

I've been looking for a lightweight and well-constructed backpack for carrying my laptop and other belongings when I travel or take my laptop on the go. Of course, a padded laptop pocket is a must, as well as other pockets for smaller items and plenty of room. I have found all that and more in Bellroy's Classic Backpack.

The Good

  • Streamlined and lightweight
  • Padded laptop pocket
  • iPad sleeve pocket
  • Additional small interior and exterior pockets
  • Nice size
  • Professional-looking
  • Padded back and straps designed for comfort

The Bad

  • Pricey
  • No water bottle pocket

No compromises

Bellroy Classic Backpack: What I like

iMore Best Award

I've been shopping for a good laptop backpack for a long time, but most on the market require some compromises. Bellroy's Classic Backpack doesn't compromise between functionality, style, and comfort. I cannot carry a heavy bag, and this one is lightweight and has just about every feature I could want.

There is a roomy, padded interior pocket for any brand laptop up to 15-inch. The bottom of the pocket is padded, which seems like an obvious must, but I have certainly seen laptop backpacks without any padding there. Additionally, there is a smaller sleeve pocket that easily houses an iPad. Inside the front portion, there is a small zippered pocket for accessories. On the outside, there is a tiny hidden pocket for valuables at the top near the grab handle.

The main section of the bag is plenty roomy. This is a 17L backpack, which certainly isn't the largest you can find, but it's a nice medium size. It measures 20 in x 14.5 in x 3 in / 490mm x 370mm x 70 mm. Bellroy makes both larger and smaller bags if this isn't the just-right size for you.

Bellroy's Classic Backpack has well-padded straps and back and is designed to hug the body so it's comfortable to wear even when it's packed. The bag is constructed from water-resistant nylon and highlighted with the environmentally certified premium top-grain leather that Bellroy is known for. The style is simple, streamlined, modern, and professional. It comes in six different colors: Mid Grey, Black, Ash, Ink Blue, Moss Grey, and Red Ochre.

Quality doesn't come cheap

Bellroy Classic Backpack: What I don't like

Unsurprisingly, a bag of this quality is not cheap. I think it's worth its price, but that's a decision each person has to make.

If I have any complaints about the design, it would be a lack of an exterior water bottle pocket. Of course, that would detract from the streamlined look, so perhaps that's intentional.

Overall great laptop backpack

Bellroy Classic Backpack: Bottom line

This is one high-quality laptop bag with plenty of features, style, quality, and comfort. With room for a 15-inch laptop, iPad, and much more, it's the perfect size for a day trip or airplane carry-on.

See at Bellroy

Karen S Freeman

Karen is a contributor to as a writer and co-host of the iMore Show. She’s been writing about Apple since 2010 with a year-long break to work at an Apple Store as a product specialist. She's also a contributor at TechRadar and Tom's Guide. Before joining iMore in 2018, Karen wrote for Macworld, CNET, AppAdvice, and WatchAware. She’s an early adopter who used to wait in long lines on release days before pre-ordering made things much easier. Karen is also a part-time teacher and occasional movie extra. She loves to spend time with her family, travel the world, and is always looking for portable tech and accessories so she can work from anywhere.